San Diego’s school libraries will be open at least one day a week next school year. That’s actually the good news.
Some schools’ libraries have been closed for years. Even worse: Many of the libraries sitting empty are gleaming new facilities filled with comfy sofas, rows of computers and shelved full of books.
A few months ago, I asked my fifth-grader if he’d been to his school library lately. He said the last time he remembered going was in third grade. I spoke to his principal, Kimberly Lopez at Hawthorne Elementary School in Clairemont, and she said the school has not employed a library technician or assistant, much less a higher-paid librarian, for two years. If children want to check out books from the school library, the only staff member authorized to do it is a school clerk. But she’s got other work to do, so her time in the library is limited.